Ex-Cenotaph drummer Oscar Clorio has joined forces with the remnants of Buried Dreams to form an as yet untitled band...Cromm Cruac bassist Rob has left the band. Rob had lost interest in the band's musical style and also felt pressured by his work. This is the first departure from the band in eleven years of existence...The End Records has gained the American license for distributing and licensing Sweden's Regain Records. Upcoming releases are Defleshed's Royal Straight Flesh, Karmakanic's Entering The Spectra, Opus Atlantica's self-titled album (featuring Johan Reinholz of Andromeda, Nonexist) on guitars and Jaime Salazar of The Flower Kings, Midnight Sun on drums), Reptilian's Thunderblaze, Tenebre's Electric Hellfire Kiss, Time Requiem's self-titled debut (featuring bassist Dick Lovgren ex of In Flames, Arch Enemy, Peter Wildoer on drums, Magnus Nord on guitar and Apollo Papathanasio of Majestic fame) and Marduk's World Funeral...CDN Records has signed Pit Bull Grin...Enslaved's new album Below the Lights will be released on 03.03.03. The album features guitarist lead guitarist A. Isdal (replacing R. Kronheims who left the band for 'unhealthy and unsociable habits' and drummer Freddy B. who replaces Dirge Rep who, according to the band, was burnt out...The reunited Death Angel has begun writing for a full-length album...Carnal Lust's debut album will be out March 1 via Diamond Production of France...Caliban whose Shadow Hearts album is now out via Lifeforce Records has seen the release licensed in Japan to Howling Bull and in the USA to Prosthetic Records...Regain Records has preceded the release of the new Marduk album, entitled World Funeral, by issuing a teaser LP called Hearse which is backed with a cover of Possessed's Phantasm....Absidia have recruited Roland, their former drummer, as the band's new guitarist...Drakkar Productions has a new Sathanas album called Hex Nefarious. Lamb Of God is in the mixing stages for As The Palaces Burn. the album is produced by Devin Townsend at Montana Studios and features an appearance by former Megadeth guitarist Chris Poland. Expect the album in April through Prosthetic Records...Bassist Richard Cabeza, who was last heard of in Murder Squad, has returned to Dismember. The latter band is hard at work at Stockhom's Sami Studio recording its Where Ironcrosses Grow album for Hammerheart Records. The band's drummer Fred Estby is producing...Former Sacred Reich guitarist Wiley Arnet has teamed up with thrash metal band St. Madness' vocalist Pat Flannery in a new band called The Human Condition. Check it out at http://www.garageband.com/artist/thehumancondition...Six Feet Under will perform at this summer's Graspop Festival in Belgium and With Full Force in Germany. The latter show will be filmed for an upcoming video. The band will be heading into Morrisound studio this spring to begin work on a new album...God Dethroned's Into The Lungs Of Hell will be released on February 15th through Metal Blade. American fans can see the band at the New Jersey Metal Fest held on March 7, 8 and 9...Greece's Agatus, featuring members of Zemial/ex-Varathron, has released a compilation of unreleased material and newer songs called The Weaving Fates via Iron Pegasus Records. The label has also announced a new album called Divine Blasphemies by Desaster..Brick Bath's new album Rebuilt will be released at the end of March via Crash Music...Inferno Festival 2003 will take place April 17-19 at Oslo's Rockefeller venue and feature, among others, Immortal, Opeth, Vader, Cadaver, Entombed, Exmortem, Carnal Forge and Raise Hell...Immortal is returning to North America in March...Drummer Max Duhamel has left Kataklysm. According to the band, Duhamel had previously agreed to complete the band's forthcoming US tour with Hate Eternal, Into Eternity and Dying Fetus, but unexpectedly rescinded his participation. While a permanent replacement is being sought, J-F Richard of Blastfame/Eon Dissonance will tour with the band. The band will enter the studio later this year to record a new album called Serenity In Fire...Krieg has a new album in the can which will see release imminently through Red Stream. The same label will soon release the debut CD of Mirrorthrone from Switzerland. The band is described as, "bearer of feelings allowing dream and imaginary but also reflection and introspection"...Baphomet Records has the following albums forthcoming: Svartpest's debut CD, which is a debut by two Necrophagia members (Fug & Frediablo), Eternal Silence's CD, as well as Soul Forsaken's Tales Of The Macabre which is described as, "aggressive and brutal melodic metal by Fug and Frediablo!"...Voliac Rock Produccions has the following albums scheduled for this year: an EP by Spain's Redox called Sharpened Knives which will be followed by a full-length later this year, Nemesis Aeterna's And The Trips Begin EP, Voice Of Hate's Gods Of Hell And Earth EP and a 10" by Deathless called The Sound Of The New World...California death metallers have signed with From Beyond Productions. They are currently finishing an album called To Prevail In Disgust which is due out in April...Barbatos which featuring Abigail's singer Yasuyuki will release an album called Rocking Metal Motherfucker in June through From Beyond Productions...Massacre Records has signed Hellion. The band's new album, Will Not Go Quietly, will be released on January 27th in Europe...Children Of Bodom's new album, Hate Crew Deathroll, has entered Finland's album charts at position number one...Drummer Gian Davila has left Engorge. His replacement is Bret O'Conner (Garden Of Shadows)...Exodus are looking for a replacement for the recently-added and then recently-fired singer Steve "Zetro" Souza. Those interested can send demos to: 10026 San Pablo, El Cerrito, CA 94530, USA...Samael has signed a management deal with World Management (Morbid Angel, Unleashed, Kreator, etc.)...Grave has been slated to appear at this year's Metal Meltdown Festival in New Jersey on March 7 and 8...Driller Killer is filming a video for the song Breaking Traditions which will be utilized in the Swedish TV series Mutant. This video is characterized as a 'teaser' and not a full-length one...Divine Decay has also completed work on its forthcoming album entitled Maximize The Misery. Several song titles are: Silence of Decades, Killing Innocence, The Discomfort of Articial Euphoria...Misery Index is travelling to Canada in March in order to record its Nuclear Blast debut with J-F Dagenais of Kataklysm. The album is entitled Retaliate...The debut CD of Colombian brutal death metallers Carnal True Blasphemy is out now through Goregiastic Records. On the same label, Pustulated's album will feature songs like Intrapathelial Sclerosis and Aortic Menstrual Sediment. and be out in April. The band's MCD will be supplemented by material from Demo 2002 and be reissued shortly as well. The Netherland's Caedere's debut CD will be recorded in April 2003 and will hit the streets in June or July 2003...Ravager's new album will be called Naxzgul Rising with the recording sessions planned to start during the third week of January...Arkhon Infaustus will tour Europe with Vader at the end of April...Melechesh have recorded their new album, entitled Sphynx, at Andy La Rocque's Los Angered Studios in Gothenburg. Song titles include: Incendium Between Mirage And Time, Of Mercury And Mercury, Apkallu Counsel and Secrets of Sumerian Sphynxology...Thornspawn is entering Morrisound Studio to record its new album Sanctified by Satan's Blood for Osmose Production. The release will have all the songs from Empress From The Realms Of Blashphemy EP as bonus material...Enslaved's Below The Lights albums is now delayed until April. The album is the band's first with lead guitarist A. Isdal and session drummer Freddy B. Watch out for the live-DVD Live Retaliation to be released through MetalMind Productions soon...Montreal's Necronomicon is in the studio recording The Sacred Medicines, the follow-up to Pharaoh Of Gods. The album is being produced by the vocalist Rob "The Witch"...Night In Gales' Björn Goosses has also joined Infliction following the departure of the latter's vocalist Idris...Anthrax's We've Come For You All is now out in Europe through Nuclear Blast...Drummer Aantar Coates is the latest departee from Diabolic. In the meanwhile Pessimist guitarist Kelly Mclauchlin has joined Diabolic replacing Brian Malone. Mclauchlin was a member of Diabolic in 1996. The next Diabolic album will be called Torrential Reign...Siebenburgen bassist Fredrik Brockert has left the fold...M.O.D.'s The Rebel You Love To Hate album is due to hit the stores in April via Nuclear Blast. The album was recorded at Wayne Manor studio with producers Paul Crook (ex-Anthrax guitarist) and Scott Metaxas (ex-Nuclear Assault bassist)...Pungent Stench is returning to America for a handful of shows this month...Sinister has entered Excess Studio to record a new album called Savage or Grace? The band is seemingly back on Nuclear Blast. Former guitarist Ron v/d Polder will record with the band as a session member, but guitarist Pascal will handle all subsequent activities...C.A.H. Records reports that the next release will be a full-length by Germany's Warspite...Australia's Vomitor has issued its Bleeding The Priest album through Swedish label Metal Blood...Shadows Fall is shooting a video for Destroyer Of Senses. The video will be directed by Zack Merek (Converge, Atreyu) and is set to feature guest appearances by members of Hatebreed, Lamb Of God and Converge...Norwegian/Irish black metal band Shadow Season has issued an EP called The Frozen through Soundriot Records. The band features members of Nekro, Dismal Euphony (drummer Kris Vold) and Gehenna's Nekro on guitars...Here is some news from Sound Riot Records: Mindgrinder has finished recording and mixing (the latter at Akkehaugen Studio). A video is also being shot. Gaia Epicus' new album is complete and artwork has been furnished J.P. Fournier (Avantasia, Immortal). Svartsyn's is also mixing its new album Destruction... at Sweden's Necromorbus Studios in February. Other news is that Satans Blood has called it a day. A 7" EP will be released through Merciless Records this year...Amon Amarth, which plays at the New Jersey Metalfest on March 7 will tour North America thereafter...Osmose Productions has signed Act Of God for three albums, the new act of two former Mutilated members. The band recently released a demo called Dies Irae which was recorded by producer Stephane Buriez...Rigor Mortis singer Dave Woodward is working on a Pornlab album for Metal Blade. With guitarist Mike Scaccia on tour with Ministry, the band's reformation has been postponed...Overkill's Killbox 13 album is scheduled for a March release through Spitfire...Overkillers Dave Linsk (g), Derek Tailer (g) and Tim Mallare (d) have a new band called Speed Kill Hate. Fronting the thrash metal band is former Anger On Anger singer (which also featured Linsk) Mario...Ireland's Abaddon Incarnate has signed to Dave Rotten's (ex-Repulse Records) Xtreem Music label. The label has also signed Paganizer whose fourth album is entitled Murder.Death.Kill.
Iced Earth, which was pursued by several labels simultaneously, has left Century Media and signed with SPV Records...FastLane Records has released the album of glam/punk rockers Romeo's Dead entitled It's All Your Fault. The debut is produced by Davy Vain. The label has also a new signing by the name of Best Of Seven described as "high-energy melodic rock." The band's debut is due in April...Balance of Power has announced the departure of vocalist Lance King. The band has already recruited a new, and as of yet unnamed vocalist who is working on the band's new album, tentatively entitled Heathen Machine...John Arch, the former singer of Fates Warning, has just signed a solo deal with Metal Blade Records. Expected soon is an EP featuring Jim Mathoes on Guitar, Joey Vera on bass and Mike Portnoy on drums...Sanctuary Records has just released some rare Blitzkrieg material on CD...Vocalist Mathias Blad has left Falconer. According to the band, "there are no hard feelings between us we just had different priorities." The new vocalist is Kristoffer Göbel who also sings in Destiny. Falconer has also given former session musicians Anders Johansson (guitar) and Peder Johansson (Bass) permanent member status...Deepsend Records and Forever Underground Records have signed American distribution deals with Crash Music...Shadows Fall singer Brian Fair recently demoed material for his side project Transient in which he plays drums...Sepultura is in Rio de Janeiro's AR Studios recording a new album...Powergod's singer Alexander Koch has joined Winter's Bane. The German singer has not left his main band...Tyrant Eyes release a new album called The Darkest Hour through Scarlet on January 27th...Former Voivod singer Eric Forrest has contacted us with the following update about his new project E-FORCE: "To all Voivod fans that liked my work on Negatron and Phobos, you are definetly going to dig E-Force's Evil Forces (due out later this year). Our music is like a sound track for World War 3." The man is also involved in a new band called Project Failing Flesh...Hammerfall's show in their hometown of Gothenburg is being filmed on February 20th for a forthcoming video...Andromeda has a new album called II=I. II=I features new vocalist David Fremberg, and also guitarist Johan Reinholdz on bass. The album will be released in March...Deep Purple is working on a new album with producer Michael Bradford (Kid Rock, etc.) which is scheduled for an autumn release...Blackmore's Night has a double live CD out through Sanctuary entitled Past Times With Good Company. Among the songs featured are also Deep Purple and Rainbow classics...Metal Blade Records' 20th Anniversary show and celebration which took place at The Palace in Hollywood last December were the subject of two shows on Much Music USA recently...Stratovarius is hitting both Russia and Greece this spring...Forte are now working on a new album. Bassist Rev. Jones (ex-Forte, MSG, Black Symphony) will record with the band. The album will be released through Infinite Records...Biohazard's new album Kill Or Be Killed will be in stores March 18th...Chavis Records has announced the release of Wycked Synn's The Vision album for the summer of 2003. The band is described as "Arizona's top metal band". The label has also signed Platinum (who had a 1990 album called Iceman) and a new album is expected this year. The label has also picked up Redd Threat's unreleased and self-titled debut for release this year. The band was signed and later dropped by RCA in the early 90's...Nevermore will be entering the studio on February 1st to lay down the tracks to its album for 2003, now announced as Enemies Of Reality...The title for the next Kings X album is announced as Black Like Sunday. The album will feature fan cover art. Former Blacktask and current solo artist Warren Appleby will issue a new CD tentatively entitled False Face Society this spring. It will be reportedly heavier than the man's previous material...Here is some news from Arise Records: Steel Attack's Predator Of The Empire CD will be released on the 7th of April. It was recorded at Underground studios. Spain's Red Wine has finished recording its forthcoming album Sueños y Locura' at Rock Studios. The song Kill Me In Dreams will be featured only in the first edition of the album. Dark Moor's Between Light And Darkness will also be out in April. This special EP features acoustic versions of the band's songs, orchestral version of the song Dies Irae and other unreleased songs. A new full-length is due in October...Stormhammer have fired their drummer Django...Agent Steel is now on Scarlet Records for Europe...Dan Swano has a new project called Second Sky...The new Krokus album Rock The Block, featuring vocalist Marc Storace, has landed in position number one of the Swiss charts...Britny Fox is working on a new album called Heavy Elements...Edenbridge's Aphelion album is out now through Massacre in Germany...Dio guitarist Doug Aldrich is touring with Whitesnake...Flotsam and Jetsam guitarist Craig Nielsen is the stand-in new member for Halford while the latter seeks a permanent member.
SPANCER - COUNTDOWN TO VICTORY
Spancer weighs more than a ton of bricks. A German doom metal band, the quintet of Markus (vocals), York (guitars), Lars (bass), Ingo (bass) and Jan (drums) crushes with a capital C! In a day and age when the doom metal tag generally refers to laid back and wussy acid rock bands. Spancer mixes Saint Vitus with Winter and piles another layer of heaviness on top. In a day and age when the doom metal tag generally refers to laid-back and wussy acid rock bands, Spancer is not only welcome but also heaven (hell)-sent! The vocalist here comes across as under constant torture, the guitarists wield their instrument as a weapon of (slow) war, the bassist's reverb resonates into the abyss and back and the drummer holds the back end quite well. What a band, and to think that York also serves time in grindcore band Hellblazer... write to email@example.com and ask to die for forty minutes at a time! - Ali "The Metallian"
ASTRAY - PROMO 2002
The core of Astray remains inspired by Emperor, but the Finnish duo varies the tempo and especially the vocal styles. The singer both sings and screams. There are many gothic forays, as well as emotional passages on the guitar. The latter, of course, is superior to the redundant keyboards. The three songs are generally fast, yet are unexpectedly often accompanied with slower drumming. The demo-CD is primarily meant as a promotional tool for the band's readied full-length for which the act is seeking a record label, as well as members. For the record, Promo 2002 has a good sound for a 'rough mix.' Either email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.astrayband.com. - Ali "The Metallian"
CONSPIRACY - DEMO 2002
Conspiracy is an unknown quantity hailing from the country to the south, namely the USA. The cover artwork could have translated to a death or black metal band, as well as a heavy metal act and the biography's contention that Conspiracy is a 'Modern Metal' band was not helping much either. It was onto the songs then which quickly revealed Conspiracy's penchant for a delivery a la Pantera. While the music maintains a mid-paced crunch, the vocals of Jim Steele in particular, go the way of Phil Anselmo. He does try to vary his voice and even uses some higher effects on Believe, but the core of Conspiracy is derivative of Pantera. Then again, there is Shine: a slow-song which strays from the rest of the material. Either way, thank the gods for anything that defies the raprock of the mainstream. The sound is professional, as is the presentation overall. To find out more please either write to www.conspiracyrocks.com or email the gang at email@example.com! - Ali "The Metallian"
HONEY FOR CHRIST - FORGING IRON WILL
In the networking world the word 'honey' refers to a bait or a sticky lure where a hacker or a system intruder has been trapped or mislead to enter. Forging Iron Will being my introduction to Irish heavy metallers HFC, you will not be getting a confirmation from this writer as to whether this bunch are in fact playing white metal or not. What can be confirmed is the band's affection for pure heavy metal as demonstrated on the three songs on parade here. The title track goes first and demonstrates a band which, while still inexperienced, strives for both variety of sound and speeds. The band has room to improve as far as mastering its instrumentation and the vocalist is occasionally flat, but it is simultaneously clear that the gang works hard to make its music interesting to the listener en route to bashing in a few heads! Movements Below The Surface is a tad slower and even has a mid-section reminiscent of Metallica. The CD ends with The Heretic Hook which oddly enough has both riffs and effects reminiscent of Desultory's Bitterness album. Correspondingly the song is both heavy and melodic. The vocalist sings in a normal fashion, intermixed with harsher and more gruff growls. The Heretic Hook is also faster in pace. Incidentally kudos goes to the great bass sound. Visit the band at www.honeyforchrist.co.uk! - Ali "The Metallian"
DIVINITY DESTROYED - same
The supplied band biography is quite confusing. It seems to refer to different releases issued at various times, count this demo as either the band's third or fourth one and outline different plans for the band in the coming year. What is certain is that American quintet Divinity Destroyed was formed in 1999 and is not easily classifiable.
Metal fans became familiar with the term 'crossover' in 1987 when DRI's album of the same name used the term to get back at its critics and describe its metal-meets-hardcore sound. As such, the term came to mean an amalgamation or mixture of different styles. Divinity Destroyed is a crossover band, but the styles sit on top of each other seemingly placed in different stacks so as to avoid a merger. Listening to the original music of this band, the listener will hear thrash metal, punk, hardcore, mallcore, polka and even world music. The singing is both effective and layered. It is rare the moment that the vocals are not doubled up. What is surprising though is that Divinity Destroyed makes it work. There is little room for confusion when the compositions sound so mature. www.divinitydestroyed.com. - Ali "The Metallian"
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